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Earn Your EdD: Online Programs in Curriculum & Instruction

Ready to dive into an online EdD program in curriculum and instruction? Keep reading for a look at top programs and what they entail.

Search hundreds of top schools for the doctorate YOU want.

Written By

Shelby Green

Last updated

Mar 04, 2024

Are you an educator looking to advance to leadership positions? Do you want to learn how to foster an inclusive environment that promotes student engagement and knowledge retention? If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, then you’re right to explore EdD online programs in curriculum and instruction.

An EdD online program in curriculum and instruction will allow you to hone your ability to develop and effectively deliver a student-centered curriculum. It will also equip you with the requisite academic background to move into positions like principal or Director of Education. Unlike their in-person counterpart, online EdD programs in curriculum and instruction are readily accessible at your convenience, empowering you to succeed on your terms

In this guide, we’ll explore several of the most popular EdD online programs in curriculum and instruction, courses you can expect to take, potential career opportunities and salaries, and answers to some of the most common questions prospective students have. 

Keep reading if you’re ready to enhance your students’ learning experience and make real, impactful change across your school community.

When it comes to EdD online programs in curriculum and instruction, the options are seemingly endless. With so many to choose from, how do you know which is right for you? Ultimately, that answer will depend on your unique career goals, schedule, and financial situation. However, to help you get started on your search, we’ve compiled a list of several of the most popular EdD online programs in curriculum and instruction available today.

University of Florida

The Teachers, Schools, and Society (TSS) online EdD program in Curriculum and Instructionis designed to prepare job-embedded professional to identify, examine, and address critical issues. Named the Program of the Year by the Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate in 2020, the TSS online EdD program supports student engagement through a cohort model that includes asynchronous and synchronous components. The University of Florida’s online EdD program can typically be completed in four years of 16-week courses. Doctoral students are required to participate in two mandatory three-week summer institutes and complete a capstone experience with a dissertation defense.

Students must be employed as full-time educators for the duration of the program. Other admissions requirements include a minimum GPA of 3.0 for the last 60 credits of undergraduate work and all graduate work, a Master or Specialist degree in education, and a minimum of three years of practical experience in the field of education. Once enrolled, students pay $448.73 per credit.

The program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

University of Louisiana Monroe

The University of Louisiana Monroe’s CAEP-accredited online Ed.D in Curriculum & Instruction can prepare you for roles like Education Administrator, Superintendent, Instructional Coordinator, and University Professor in as few as 24 months. Led by accomplished faculty, the program teaches students to link theoretical concepts to common curricular and instructional issues in real-world educational settings.

Students explore research-backed theories, master methods of qualitative and quantitative research, and examine political, social, intellectual, and moral foundations in education. The program consists of 24 credit hours of core courses and 36 credit hours of concentration courses, which include either a capstone experience or dissertation. Tuition is set at$500 per credit.

Prospective students must have a master’s degree and a minimum undergraduate GPA of 2.75 from a regionally accredited institution.

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

Theonline EdD in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley will prepare you to succeed in leadership positions across all levels of education. This synchronous online program provides students with the specialized skills they need to develop and lead P-12 programs.

Students have the option to tailor their learning experience to their career goals by offering specializations in Bilingual Studies, Educational Technology, Curriculum and Pedagogical Generalist, Literacy, Mathematics Education, Science Education, or Special Education. To graduate, students must complete a dissertation.

Prospective students must havea master’s degree from a regionally accredited United States institution or equivalent, a minimum GPA of 3.25 for all previous graduate work, and three years of experience in education or equivalent. They must also submit a personal statement and a professional resume as part of their application to the program. 

A Closer Look at Coursework 

While each EdD online program in curriculum and instruction has its own unique curriculum, there are many courses that you can expect to encounter in each of them. In this section, we’ll explore several of the most popular courses offered in EdD online programs in curriculum and instruction and how they can help you become a better educator.

Applied Statistical Analysis 

Earning an online EdD in curriculum and instruction will prepare for you school leadership roles and other specialized roles that rely heavily on data. As such, the curriculum must be informed by data, its analysis, and its application. This course will help you build the skills you need to understand data and solve real-world problems.

Critical Pedagogy 

Critical pedagogy examines power dynamics and social inequalities to help drive transformation. In this course, you’ll explore the roles of class, race, institutions, gender, and politics in education to become an advocate for equity and social change both in and out of the classroom.

Education for Diversity in a Global Society 

Today’s classrooms are more diverse than ever. This course will examine diversity in education and explore theoretical frameworks that prepare teachers, administrators, and other staff to cultivate learning environments that foster inclusivity and cater to the varying needs of students so each can thrive.

Identifying Complex Problems of Practice

Today’s educators are faced with ever-evolving challenges that impact student learning. This course will explore the theoretical frameworks — and their practical application — for identifying and addressing complex problems of practice to improve the overall educational experience, drive positive change within the school community, and enhance student learning.

Motivation and Cognition in Learning 

Motivation and cognition both play significant roles in how we learn and process information. In this course, you’ll explore the psychology behind learning, delve into cognitive processes and examine theories of motivation. This course will prepare you to address motivational and cognitive challenges in the classroom to enhance student engagement.

Professional Development 

With education evolving at such a rapid pace, professional development is key for educators looking to keep up with the latest trends. This course explores professional development strategies and empowers you to create programs that promote continuous learning. You’ll be prepared to pursue professional development opportunities individually and on behalf of your educational institution.

Career Paths for EdD in Curriculum & Instruction Graduates

An online EdD in curriculum and instruction can unlock the door to several lucrative career paths that will allow you to drive meaningful change. Below we’ll explore several of the most popular careers for individuals with an EdD in curriculum and instruction.

Chief Learning Officer 

As a Chief Learning Officer, you’ll work to further learning and development initiatives within your organization. Rather than working in a classroom, you’ll work in a corporate setting, training and educating employees. Key responsibilities of this role include ensuring training and education programs align with your institution’s values; identifying trends and organizational needs; implementing new technologies; measuring the effectiveness of training programs; and collaborating with other business leaders.

Average National Pay: $126,193


Curriculum Specialist and Instructional Designer 

With 15,000 new jobs projected over the next decade, Curriculum Specialist and Instructional Designer is one of the most in-demand roles. In this capacity, you’ll focus on what students are learning and how. Your responsibilities may include developing a curriculum based on learning objectives; reviewing and selecting textbooks and other instructional materials; analyzing learning gaps; collaborating with educators to promote student learning; and conducting workshops and trainings.

Average National Pay: $87,652

Director of Education 

The Director of Education makes important decisions regarding students, staff, and families. They are usually the administrator of a school or institution responsible for ensuring the organization is running optimally; defining educational goals and developing policies and procedures to ensure those goals are met; managing and monitoring teacher performance; overseeing the school’s budget; and continuously identifying and implementing new strategies to foster a conducive learning environment for both students and teachers.

Average National Pay: $108,243

Answering Your Questions About Curriculum and Instruction EdD Programs 

Now that you’ve taken a deeper dive into online EdD programs in curriculum and instruction, you probably have a few questions. We’re here to address them — from admission requirements and financial aid options to program length and flexibility, we have the answers to all of your burning questions below.

Are there online EdD programs that don’t require the GRE?

Yes, there are online EdD programs that don’t require you to take the GRE. In fact, many programs are making the requirement optional to make graduate admissions more accessible. This allows schools to evaluate potential students more holistically, without defining them by a test score. Check with your program to see if the GRE is required for admission. 

Are these programs flexible for working professionals?

Some online EdD programs encourage or empower students to continue working so you can apply what you’re learning to the field immediately. However, sometimes online EdD programs can be quite rigorous and for some, it may be beneficial to forgo employment while enrolled.

Can I teach with an EdD in curriculum and instruction?

An online EdD in curriculum and instruction can enhance your teaching abilities — the concepts and skills you learn throughout the program can expand your expertise and empower you to create a better learning environment for your students. An EdD can also expand your career opportunities beyond teaching and into leadership roles like Principal, Curriculum Designer, and Superintendent.

How much do EdD programs cost?

According to the Education Data Initiative, the average cost of a Doctorate of Education is $112,350. While that number can be worrisome, it’s important to remember that it’s an average and there are plenty of affordable online EdD programs available. Additionally, there are many financial aid options available to help ease the financial burden, including scholarships, grants, and loans.

What are the admission requirements for these programs?

While admission requirements vary by program, they typically entail a certain amount of work experience, a minimum GPA, and a master’s degree. Some programs may also require you to submit a personal statement that highlights your career aspirations and reason for pursuing a terminal degree.

What is the shortest EdD online program?

Doctorate programs are multi-year commitments that typically take 5-7 years to complete. On average, online EdD programs can be completed in approximately 3-4 years. However, some schools offer accelerated pathways and shorter semesters that enable you to complete the program in as few as 2 years.